Cholesterol and calcium-- 06/25/01
Sun 1.5 miles + weights
Mon ran 4 miles
date weight change
06/17 203 --
06/23 201 -2
There was a health screening ("Winning with Wellness") held at work this past Friday. Although I always seem to be going around saying "I need to get back into shape" and "I need to lose some weight" and "I need to get in more running miles" and on and on... it was a health screening held a year ago that pushed me into actually doing something -- that plus two other journalers (Bev and Nance) keeping track of their diets online.

The height/weight charts convinced me that I wasn't overweight -- I was at the ideal weight for being six foot five and since I was actually five eleven -- I was just undertall. Unfortunately, I couldn't think of any reasonable way to gain height at my age so I would just have to bring my weight down. That worked fine... I went from 206 down to 192 (actually, I think I may have hit 190 a few days) but I lost focus and stayed around that weight for a while and then begain to slowly gain until I hit 200 this winter. I seemed to stay around that for months but recently noticed that I'd crept up to 203. Okay, time to get serious about this...

So this year's health screening didn't push me into my efforts, but it may help keep me on track. I came out okay on some tests, but not so good on others...

  • Blood pressure -- 130/85 -- okay, "high-normal" -- but better than I tend to do when my blood pressure is taken when I'm going to donate blood -- guess the prospect of having a needle stuck in my arm bothers me. Still... ten or twelve years ago I would have been more likely to have a 120/80 reading... I can't do anything about the years, but I can work on the weight and the general fitness.
  • Cholesterol -- this was really good -- total cholesterol 161, HDL 51 and TC/HDL ratio 3.1 -- all of which are readings well into the healthy normal range.
  • Glucose -- also good, a glucose reading of 87 (with normal being anythng under 160).
  • Body composition -- mixed results -- waist/hip ratio of .86 (so I'm not pear-shaped), body fat reading of 15.6%, but according to the height/weight chart I'm overweight (duh!)... well, first I need to drop ten or twelve pounds... and then I'd really like to drop an additional eight or ten pounds...
  • Bone density T-score -- -0.9 -- yeah, that's a negative point nine -- based on ultrasound on my left heel bone -- and it is not good -- based on comparison with the mean bone mass density reading for a young adult -- a positive number means low risk for developing osteoporosis, zero to minus one means medium risk, below minus one is high risk. My score is in the medium risk category, but it is very close to moving to high risk. So I've got to increase my calcium intake. I must confess that I had not paid much attention to calcium for myself -- I tend to buy calcium-added orange juice, but that was for Nancy and Jennifer -- I had always just assumed that having milk and cereal most mornings plus a glass or two of O.J. was a sufficient base plus whatever else I'd eat during the day. Wrong! Once upon a time I used to drink lots of milk, but somehow over the years I drifted away from it... I'd better start paying attention to those "Got Milk?" advertisements.
So, that health screening has given me a few things to think about... and some changes to make... Obviously it has reconfirmed my decision to lose weight and get into shape. They key thing is to keep at it... not fall into skipping days because I am just "too busy" and then one skipped day becomes two and three and... I think that watching what I eat and working out everyday will take care of the weight loss and improved fitness and, perhaps, get my blood pressure down into the kind of low range it used to be in. Needless to say, I've begun taking calcium supplements and I think I'd better add a glass of milk. My periodontist has told me that I have a problem with bone loss in my jaw but I had been thinking that was strictly a dental problem... I guess it's a whole body problem...

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